Counterfeit Medicine News for the Week of November 2, 2020

COVID-19 counterfeits and fraud:

The FDA warned a business in Lansing, Michigan to stop promoting “Dissolve BioActive Silicate” and silver products as treatments to cure or prevent COVID-19. It also sent a warning letter to a pharmaceutical company in Emeryville, California that claimed their eye care products would protect against the coronavirus.

A federal court in Ohio issued a temporary restraining order against 25 counterfeit websites that have allegedly tricked consumers into paying for Clorox and Lysol products that they never deliver.

Canada government agencies announced that they had intercepted 380 shipments of unauthorized  or counterfeit COVID-19-related goods at the British Columbian border, including 48,000 COVID-19 test kits,  4.5 million units of personal protective equipment and 33,000 prescription tablets and pills.

The FDA warned a business in Lansing, Michigan to stop promoting “Dissolve BioActive Silicate” (above) and silver products to cure or prevent COVID-19.

Counterfeit News:

We talked about Tyler Skaggs' death and the prosecution in August. Subscribe to our YouTube channel to keep up with our news of the week.

Cambodian authorities burned 540.7 tons of counterfeit products, including almost 8 tons of fake medicines. Source: Khmer Times


A federal judge in Fort Worth, Texas has scheduled the trial of former Angels employee Eric Kay, who allegedly sold pitcher Tyler Skaggs the counterfeit pill that killed him, for December 14, 2020.

A man in Milwaukee, Wisconsin was charged with selling the counterfeit fentanyl pills that killed a 36-year-old Cedarburg resident in May 2020.

A state employee in Franklin County, Kentucky has been indicted for allegedly selling generic Viagra he illegally imported from suppliers in India, Singapore and elsewhere.

Gustavo Rivera of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, has been sentenced to 4.5–9 years in prison for delivering the pill that killed Kara Heckenberger in August 2017.

Two residents of Grand Forks, North Dakota are among six people charged with selling two fentanyl pills to a juvenile who later suffered a non-fatal overdose.


Law enforcement in Gillette, Wyoming seized 1400 fake oxycodone pills made with fentanyl.

Police in Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada seized counterfeit Percocet, among other illicit drugs, when they executed two search warrants on October 29th.

On November 5th, Cambodia’s Counter Counterfeit Committee destroyed 7.7 tons of counterfeit medicines it had seized in recent months.


Police in Montreal, Canada are warning that a resident had died after taking a counterfeit oxycodone made with isotonitazene, a synthetic opioid they characterized as "more potent than fentanyl." Montreal police seized 2,000 isotonitazene pills among 20,000 counterfeit pills during a drug bust in August 2020.


Authorities in Billings, Montana have confirmed that 25-year-old Rafael Gneiting, who died at a halfway house in August 2020, was the victim of a counterfeit pill made with fentanyl.

Even as we are dealing with the pandemic, PSM is keeping a steady eye on public reports of dangerous counterfeit drugs. Check back for next week’s summary.